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Lumos Networks Corp Valuation – Initial Coverage $LMOS

Benjamin Graham taught that Intelligent Investors must do a thorough fundamental analysis of investment opportunities to determine their intrinsic value and inherent risk.  This is best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another company or by reviewing the 10 Stocks for Using A Benjamin Graham Value Investing Strategy – March 2017.  By using the ModernGraham method one can review a company’s historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries.  What follows is a stock analysis showing a specific look at how Lumos Networks Corp (LMOS) fares in the ModernGraham valuation model.

Company Profile (obtained from Google Finance): Lumos Networks Corp. is a fiber-based bandwidth infrastructure and service provider in the Mid-Atlantic region with a network of long-haul fiber, metro Ethernet and Ethernet rings located primarily in Virginia and West Virginia, and portions of Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Kentucky. The Company serves carrier, business and residential customers over its fiber network offering data, voice and Internet protocol (IP) services. The Company operates through three segments: Data, Residential and Small Business (R&SB), and RLEC Access. The Data segment includes the Company’s enterprise data, transport and Fiber to the Cell (FTTC) product groups. The R&SB segment includes legacy voice and IP services products targeted to its residential and small business customers. The RLEC Access segment provides other carrier customers access to the Company’s network within the Company’s rural local exchange carrier (RLEC) territories through switched access services.

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Downloadable PDF version of this valuation:

ModernGraham Valuation of LMOS – March 2017

Stage 1: Is this company suitable for the Defensive Investor or the Enterprising Investor?

What kind of Intelligent Investor are you?

Defensive Investor; must pass 6 out of the following 7 tests.
1. Adequate Size of the Enterprise Market Cap > $2Bil $416,238,869 Fail
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 2 2.13 Pass
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 10 years prior Fail
4. Dividend Record Dividend Payments for 10 years prior Fail
5. Earnings Growth Increase of 33% in EPS in past 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end 2766.67% Pass
6. Moderate PEmg Ratio PEmg < 20 43.00 Fail
7. Moderate Price to Assets PB Ratio < 2.5 OR PB*PEmg < 50 3.08 Fail
Enterprising Investor; must pass 4 out of the following 5 tests, or be suitable for the Defensive Investor.
1. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 1.5 2.13 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Debt to NCA < 1.1 8.55 Fail
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 5 years prior Fail
4. Dividend Record Currently Pays Dividend Fail
5. Earnings Growth EPSmg greater than 5 years ago Pass

Stage 2: Determination of Intrinsic Value

EPSmg $0.41
MG Growth Estimate 15.00%
MG Value $15.81
Opinion Overvalued
MG Grade D
MG Value based on 3% Growth $5.95
MG Value based on 0% Growth $3.49
Market Implied Growth Rate 17.25%
Current Price $17.66
% of Intrinsic Value 111.70%

Lumos Networks Corp does not satisfy the requirements of either the Enterprising Investor or the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the small size, insufficient earnings stability over the last ten years, the poor dividend history, and the high PEmg and PB ratios. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the net current assets, and the lack of earnings stability over the last five years, and the lack of dividends. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should explore other opportunities at this time or proceed cautiously with a speculative attitude.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be Overvalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $0.05 in 2013 to an estimated $0.41 for 2017. This level of demonstrated earnings growth does not support the market’s implied estimate of 17.25% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value below the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Lumos Networks Corp revealed the company was trading above its Graham Number of $7.62. The company does not pay a dividend. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share – ModernGraham) was 43, which was below the industry average of 68.5, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-21.96.

Lumos Networks Corp scores quite poorly in the ModernGraham grading system, with an overall grade of D.

Stage 3: Information for Further Research

Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) -$21.96
Graham Number $7.62
PEmg 43.00
Current Ratio 2.13
PB Ratio 3.08
Current Dividend $0.00
Dividend Yield 0.00%
Number of Consecutive Years of Dividend Growth 0

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Most Recent Balance Sheet Figures

Balance Sheet Information 12/1/2016
Total Current Assets $100,505,000
Total Current Liabilities $47,286,000
Long-Term Debt $454,885,000
Total Assets $753,372,000
Intangible Assets $108,800,000
Total Liabilities $618,198,000
Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) 23,576,000

Earnings Per Share History

EPS History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $0.45
Dec2016 -$0.02
Dec2015 $0.43
Dec2014 $0.95
Dec2013 $0.80
Dec2012 $0.76
Dec2011 -$2.11

Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham History

EPSmg History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $0.41
Dec2016 $0.46
Dec2015 $0.52
Dec2014 $0.40
Dec2013 $0.05
Dec2012 -$0.31
Dec2011 -$0.70

Recommended Reading:

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None. This is the first time ModernGraham has covered the company.

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Disclaimer:

The author did not hold a position in any company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours.  See my current holdings here.  This article is not investment advice; any reader should speak to a registered investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions.  ModernGraham is not affiliated with the company in any manner.  Please be sure to review our detailed disclaimer.

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